FARGO, N.D. (KVLY) - Personal safety and protection are at the top of everyone’s priority list. That’s why many people have turned to doorbell cameras like Ring, using them to keep an eye on what’s going on outside, but also bringing them into the home to monitor what’s going on inside.
But lately, these same technologies that are meant to keep people safe, have been the target of hackers, hacking the systems and entering peoples’ homes through the camera.
Most recently, hackers began communicating with an 8-year-old girl in Tennessee through the Ring camera surveillance system set up in her bedroom, which she shares with her sisters.
This is an alarming wake-up call for others who use these devices in their homes, like Derek Holt of Fargo, who does just that.
“Terrifying,” reacted Holt after watching the video. “I have a 2-year-old at home and if someone was talking to my son, maybe not now, but a year from now, and could potentially talk him down to opening the door because he thinks it's me, to let him in. It’s pretty scary.”
Holt says that he uses a two-step verification system to keep his devices safe and secure, but understands that those who don’t could be targeted.
“There's risk out there and if you don't know what you're doing, something like that could potentially happen,” said Holt.
Most of the houses in the Rose Creek have smart doorbells, and neighbors say that overall, they enjoy the benefits of having the extra security.
But what steps should you take if your system gets hacked?
Brian Crommett, CEO of 702 Communications explains that the first thing you do is unplug.
“Once it's unplugged they cant get to you,” said Crommett. “They can’t see you, they can’t hear you."
The next step is to go into the app and change your username and password, immediately.
Crommett emphasizes the importance of having a long and complicated password, equipped with characters and numbers.
“Stuff like this can't be fixed with hardware. It’s gotta be a conscious effort to use a different username and password to keep hackers out,” explained Crommett. “Then you can feel reasonably secure that this won't happen in your house.”